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ICFA Updates and Expands Award Programs

Adds new sales rep award

The International Casual Furnishings Association has adopted several updates to its existing awards programs and added a Sales Representative of the Year award to its annual lineup.

The new award is designed to recognize and honor a sales representative who is a member of ICFA and an active partner with both retailers and manufacturers. Persons considered will be those who serve as an inspiration or model within the industry and whose service is considered both exceptional and innovative.
All ICFA members will be invited to nominate individuals for Sales Representative of the Year. Nominations will include a short biography and explanation of why the individual is deserving of the honor. Each nomination also must be accompanied by the names of two additional industry members who support the nomination. Voting will be conducted online, and the winner will be honored at the International Casual Furniture and Accessories Market in Chicago this fall.

In addition to adding Sales Representative of the Year, ICFA will reintroduce its Manufacturer Leadership Award this year. One manufacturer will be honored in each of 10 categories, including: cast metal, wrought iron/wrought aluminum, rattan/wicker/woven materials, wood, tubular materials, resin/fiberglass, shade products, outdoor lighting, outdoor rugs/ carpeting/flooring and complementary casual products. Manufacturers will be rated on the design and quality of their products, along with merchandising, customer service, ethics, communications and trade relations. From the category winners, an overall Manufacturer of the Year will be named.
These two awards will be presented at a new awards event on Sept. 22. The event will also include recognition of the Design Excellence category winners and the Lillian B. Winchester “Best of Show” recipient. As part of its award updates, the ICFA agreed to conduct the Best of Show voting online.

Recognition of the Apollo Award finalists and winners, as well as the ICFA Lifetime Achievement Award winners, will continue to be reserved for a separate awards dinner event. This year that event will be Thursday, Sept. 23, at Chicago’s Field Museum. A new online ballot is being developed for the Apollo Awards to make the voting a more inclusive process for ICFA’s growing membership.

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